I’d been fascinated with Rand since I’d written a story in the New York Times magazine about a competitive championship tournament bridge player who was also an active objectivist and Rand devotee. I had read half of Atlas Shrugged before I got the gist of my role. I really enjoyed the book because of its absurdly reductive philosophy that inadvertently plays on adolescent male narcissism like a jazz saxophone — to draw a connection to the famous Randian saxophonist and economist Alan Greenspan — but it also spoke directly to the adolescent male fantasy of “I’m the only smart one. Everyone is leeching off of me and I’d rather destroy my work than compromise my integrity by being nice to others.” Her moral severity came as a tonic to my cultural relativist upbringing.

The dress in which John Hodgman impersonated Ayn Rand, one of the many magnificent garment-related tales in Emily Spivack’s Worn Stories.

Watch on projecthires.tumblr.com

basically, what confessions of an economic hitman is about. i read this book years ago, and i find it hard to argue that this not close to what is happening in the world. this clip is made by the renegade economist, who are also behind the four horsemen feature film.

The Economist - May 10th - 16th, 2014

After SHIELD turns out to be mostly HYDRA, public opinion of global intelligence agencies is at an all time low. Cue the mud-slinging.

MediAvengers is an MCU media blog.  Magazine spreads and newspaper articles made by fans, for the fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

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All non-Marvel headlines are from the original real-world issue of the publication. 

 On Tuesday, January 14, the Economic Policy Institute released an open letter to President Barack Obama and the leaders of Congress, urging the federal government to raise the minimum wage. The letter was signed by 75 leading economists – including seven Nobel laureates – and backed a plan sponsored by two democratic Congressmen. 

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I’m sure that it’s true that adding 10% more workers to London and letting them live like factory hens would make London’s corporations more profitable. Londoners may even acquire more tablet computers and smart phones. Yet our lives would be worse! Already the definition of a kitchen in a flat in Hackney is a line of cupboards down the side of the living room. Just how many times can they divide up these beautiful old houses into smaller and smaller boxes?

The mistake that these economists make is to become totally business centric. Their analysis stops at the profits of business and they fail to follow the process through to ensure that it benefits the population as a whole.

It is notable that the venerable economists who wrote the letter to Mr. Osbourne uttered not a squeak about the corporate profits which are being  filched away overseas to avoid paying tax as was reported in the same edition of the FT. Surely that too is “deeply damaging to the competitiveness of our science and research sectors and the wider economy”.



This week’s issue of The Economist with Doctor Who inside.

See if you could find a TARDIS on the cover page.

<Not a Doctor Who fan myself but I thought you guys might like to see this…or not, since it’t quite depressing to see what’s gonna happen in the future.>

Disclaimer: I own nothing. Pic scanned by me. Original source from The Economist. Written by Emma Duncan

The Economist has a heavily sarcastic map up pointing out what national boundaries might look like if everyone adopted Putin’s attitude of linguistic imperialism and some of the many reasons why this would be a terrible idea:

WHEN Vladimir Putin justified his annexation of Crimea on the ground that he owed protection to Russian speakers everywhere, this newspaper took a dim view of his line of argument, pointing out that since linguistic borders do not match those of states, it would lead to chaos. We now recognise that this approach to international relations betrayed a deplorable conservatism. Since we pride ourselves on pushing the boundaries in search of a way to clamber out of the box and reach the summit of blue-sky thinking, we reckoned we should grasp the nettle of radical Putinism and run with it. […]

A unified Arabia would stretch from the Atlantic to the Indian Ocean. There might be the odd squabble between Sunnis, Shias, Christians and adherents of archaic notions of nation; but united by a common tongue, the Arabs would be sure to get along fine, especially if they teamed up to smite the Persian-speakers on the other side of the Gulf. The two Koreas would become one, which might be a good thing—or not, depending on which system prevailed.

Geoff Pullum on Language Log also notes some problems:

Switzerland would have to disappear completely, clearly, but new nations like Basqueland and Kurdistan would obviously have to arise.

The idea is, of course, political lunacy. Whoever started the reunification of India, Pakistan, and Bangla Desh would probably be creating a nuclear war rather than a peaceful Hindi-Urdu-speaking friendship zone. And one by one the speakers of smaller languages (the vast majority of the roughly 7,000 languages on the planet) would start declaring independence or seizing pieces of their neighbours’ land.

I’m not sure how anyone can recognize that civil wars and revolutions exist and at the same time think that a common language is a guarantor of harmony (although it’s also a stated goal of Esperanto). Sometimes a common language just makes it really easy to communicate how much you don’t get along. 

This must be some kind of Political statement since that’s what the portuguese government stands for if you can read what they say between the lines…

I hate all this corruption and power abuse I mean, they were hired by us, they must not forget that. If you make the politics according to corporations then you are in a fascism. As plain as that!

(not my photo by the way)